Brian Pitzer has noticed only one difference at the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center since it opened a year ago - more people are working there.
Brian Pitzer has noticed only one difference at the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center since it opened a year ago — more people are working there.
The CEO of Vitality Distributing, the company that produces Avitae caffeinated water, came to the DEC at its inception, sensing it would be successful. The DEC, at 7003 Post Road, was started by the city to aid startup businesses.
"I don't think it's changed, but what's happened here is the powers that be have adapted to what people need," Pitzer said. "The concept has been wonderful from the beginning, but being in a game situation has helped (the DEC) adapt."
The DEC celebrated its first anniversary last week by holding an open house and launching a "Green Integrator" that will nurture fledgling green businesses and help them collaborate.
The DEC has more than 40 tenants on four floors and the top floor is full, said Nancy Richison, a city consultant.
Businesses that join the green integrator will not only get the chance to work with like-minded businesses, but they also can take advantage of other services offered by the DEC such as seminars and assistance from TechColumbus.
"You get the expertise of (human resources) and technical matchups," Pitzer said. "It's one heck of a conducive atmosphere."
Zack Griffin said his company, Evolved Energy Solutions, looked at other spaces before settling on the green integrator on the second floor of the DEC. For the company that focuses on lowering clients' energy costs with green solutions, the green integrator seemed like a natural fit.
Events like last week's open house and weekly seminars have assured him he made the right decision, he said.
"Even in other office spaces with other business we wouldn't have the exposure we have here," Griffin said. "We did look at other space, but located here because of events."
Griffin said he takes advantage each week of events offered at the DEC.
"There are legal and accounting things we've gone to," he said. "There is an amount of excitement here. It's a great place to be."
PC Help Express moved to the fourth floor of the DEC last May, company president Joe Timmons said.
"I think it was the resources available to grow a business, the focus on technology," he said of reasons for moving to the DEC.
He likes how it has evolved during the first year. "They've gotten more material resources such as donated desks. There are new tenants," he said. "The buzz has gotten bigger."
Timmons also has taken advantage of seminars and other opportunities at the DEC to streamline his computer-services company.
"Myself or my employees go to seminars almost weekly. We get consulting on bookkeeping (and) marketing. ... (The DEC has) opened the door to tech-minded entrepreneurs so we can learn from each other," he said.
Justin Schultz, an engineer with Metro CD Engineering, appreciates that the green integrator allows his business to collaborate with other green companies and that employees get to meet new people at co-working "jellies."
"One of the best things at the DEC is the jellies. They have lots of different speakers," he said. "It's great to go there not only to hear the speakers providing helpful info, but also go and network."